Although the maglev operating technology could produce smooth train rides at speeds up to 500 km per hour, no full scale operating maglev system has been built. The problems encountered, such as being much more expensive than conventional railways and as yet, not fail-safe, have limited the maglev application. A new design which uses no superconducting magnets or powered electromagnets is being developed. Named Inductrack, it uses permanent room-temperature magnets which are similar to bar magnets. In this concept, the underside of each train car has an Halbach array of magnetic bars which produce a very strong magnetic field. The track has closely packed coils of insulated wire and each coil is a closed circuit. The Inductrack produces levitating forces by inducing electric currents in the track. This article explores the theory of Inductrack and presents other possible uses for this new concept.

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Scientific American Incorporated

    415 Madison Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10017
  • Authors:
    • Post, R F
  • Publication Date: 2000-1


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 82-87
  • Serial:
    • Scientific American
    • Volume: 282
    • Issue Number: 1
    • Publisher: Scientific American Incorporated
    • ISSN: 0036-8733

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00782022
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 6 2000 12:00AM